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Thanks for the unusual 12 months in Calgary

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Article author:

David Parker • • Calgary Herald

Release date:

December 23, 2020 • • December 23, 2020 • • 3 minutes read As the sun sets in 2020, a year the pandemic kept us apart, the personal connections that have been made over the years still remain strong. Photo by Gavin Young /.Postmedia

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The end of the year gives time to reflect on the last 12 months these columns have been written and the people who have been so helpful in keeping me updated on the business of this exciting city.

It also allows me to think of people who have made great contributions in Around Town’s more than 20 years since then. Business editor Ron Nowell gave me the opportunity to share good news with readers that I really enjoy digging up. I have fond memories of business talks with Art Smith, Larry Ryder, Arlene Flock, Chris Richardson, Sam Switzer, Tom Donaldson, Bill Partridge, Rosemarie Enslin, Myrna Dube, David Swanson, Roger Jarvis, Gerald Knowlton, Helmar Basedow and Gustavo Yelamo, der at Centini for many years before retiring to run a B&B in Union Bay on Vancouver Island.

I’ve had the pleasure of meeting so many new business people again this year, but 2020 was strange – for the first time, I had to do a lot of phone interviews. When I first meet people, I like to look at body language, check the family photos on the sideboard, and look over the office walls to see if they are putting up fake or hockey jerseys.


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But I did manage to visit some interesting entrepreneurial guys in between restrictions and have a chat with Jess Brousseau and Ian Gregory who are offering their fine-printing skills at Feast Letterpress. Katia Sayegh from Yara Flower Art; Iris Lui of Hutch Kitchen and Hutch Café; and Chinook cheese owner Tarif Hamad, who introduced me to the delicious dishes of the Levant. I also really appreciated being back with Mogens Smed from Falkbuilt, Archie Roberts from Roberts Residential and his brother Bill who became CEO of Nobal Technologies, and PR specialist Bill Watson who was returning to Calgary after many years in the Maritimes, to be connected.

Fortunately, there is still a long list of many who have long supported us. I especially like one number that I meet regularly – not during the COVID restrictions – to have a beer or a coffee, including Kevin Gregor, Gerry Garvey, Ron Kurczaba, Pat Ottman, Brad Regier, columnist Richard White and Terry Moore.

Some people are hard to reach without texting first, but I can always get a quick reply from George Brookman, Sandra Georgetti, Bernie Bayer, Peggy Perry, Mike Warner, Patricia Verburgt, Niha Prasad Kroliczek, Tony James, Paige O ‘ Neill and Peter are expecting and Justin Mayerchak, Doug Porozni, Cathy Orr, Chris Saunders, Michael Evans, Ross Roy, Sean Flathers, Rick Andison, Melvin Foht, Mike Kehoe, Jon Mook, Hannes Kovak, Randy Mowat, Melodie Creegan, Todd Throndson, James Robertson, Jason Cottle, Glen Clark, Fred Clemens, Kevin Deeks and Laureen Regan.


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We have some good communication professionals in this city who not only know how to reach me but also understand what interests me most, including Bob Sumner, Paula Worthington, Bonnie Elgie, Noelle Aune, Giselle Danis, Ellen Parker, Erica Morgan and Cassandra McAuley. Shauna MacDonald, Lana Rogers and Shael Gelfand.

Long-term relationships are very much appreciated; I can always count on Phil Libin, Frank Sisson, Jim Button, Mark Wilson, Jan Eden, Paul Van Ginkel, Bert Messier, Gerry Wood, Bill Chomik, Patricia Phillips, Cody Clayton, Peter Wallis, David Rutledge, Mike Shaikh and Garry Beres leaving Glenn Tibbles, Vince Dods, Victor Choy, Scott Taylor, Harvey Thal, John Dong, Marc Rosso, Lou MacEachern, Jerilyn Wright, Chris Ollenberger, Ross Glen, Chris Law, Bill Mitchell, Clark Grue, Raymond Kan and Kim McConnell.

I can count on Gerard Carlier to keep me updated on what’s going on in our Consular Corps, although I didn’t see many of them at events like the July 4th Garden Party and UK Day with Consul General Caroline Saunders in Spruce Meadows in 2020 . as well as receptions in the house of the Japanese Consul General Kobayashi and teas with the Chinese Consul General Lu Xu. But I appreciate the most beautiful calendar with beautiful examples of Japanese ikebana and the most beautiful Christmas card from the Chinese consulate.

Thank you all for your support and friendship and I look forward to many interesting discussions with you and an extended group in a hopefully more normal year 2021. And thank you, the loyal readers, too. I wish you a merry, healthy and happy Christmas season.

David Parker appears regularly in the Herald. Read his columns online at calgaryherald.com/business. He can be reached at 403-830-4622 or by email at info@davidparker.ca.

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